Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Handler Family ~ Another Generation Back

I recently shared my "aha" moment about my father-in-law's Hebrew name being Tzvi Hersch (צבי הרש) which often becomes Harry in America.

My father-in-law's paternal grandmother was Sally Handler. (Also known as Roza, Rozalia, and Szali, as I shared at Different Names-Same Person.) I shared some information about her at Mystery Monday - Finding a Jewish Great-Grandmother, where I noted that JewishGen's Online Burial Registry (JOWBR) has an entry for Sally Handler:

She is Chaya Sara bat [daughter of] Zvi.

In Great-Grandmother Handler Married Twice, I shared a 1911 marriage record for Rosalie Hendler [sic] and Samuel Goodman where her parents are listed as Harry Hendler [sic] and Anna Stern.

I therefore theorize that this Handler line is:

Harry Handler = Anna Stern
Sally Handler
Josef Handler
Harry Handler
My husband

And the awkward thing about this line is that Sally Handler married her father's brother, Aaron Handler who was about 20 years her senior and a widower with children.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Harry is Tzvi Hersch

My husband's parents got married in 1952. I scanned their ketubah (Jewish marriage contract) last summer. The digital image has been sitting in a folder waiting to be filed.

I took a look at it today and realized that their Hebrew names are on it. The following image is a small part of the entire ketubah:

However, I can't read Hebrew script, so I uploaded this section of the image to the Tracing the Tribe Facebook group (everyone is SO helpful there) and almost immediately received the following response to my translation request:

Tzvi Hersch son of Yosef the Levite. Bride is Ita daughter of Moshe.

(I already knew that Chana Ita is my mother-in-law's full Hebrew name.)

JewishGen has a Given Names Database, which I have previously explored. I returned to this search page today to see what it might tell me about the name Tzvi Hersch.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Great Uncle David Levitt of Philadelphia

My husband's great-grandfather, Max Levitt (1857-1935), married twice. I believe the name of his first wife was Adele Willer. (Hadel Willer on her daughter Rebecca's NYC marriage record.) There are two granddaughters who were named Adele, daughters of their son David Levitt and their daughter Rebecca (Levitt) Reisner. It is thought that Adele died either on the boat coming over to America, or before the family left Galicia for America. Max's second wife was Golda (also known as Gussie) Segal, from whom my husband is descended.

This can get confusing so I just set up a very simple tree for Max and his first wife, Adele, and their two children I know who had children: David and Rebecca.

David had three daughters with his first wife, and one daughter with his second wife.

Rebecca married Jacob Reisner and had seven children with him. I have blogged about this family before. See Jacob's and Rebecca's marriage license. See Jacob Reisner's obituary. See their tombstone.

I recently had contact from someone whose mother is second cousin to my husband, descended from David Levitt and his second wife, whom I found as Yetta Cornfield (Philadelphia Marriage Index), though he knows her as Henrietta. His grandmother is recently-deceased Shirley Mae Levitt in the tree above.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Finding New Jersey County Naturalization Records

My mother-in-law's family arrived in Woodbine, New Jersey, soon after its founding in 1891. I have written about the naturalization of her father, Max Levitt, and her great-grandfather, Simche Siegel, both in Cape May County, New Jersey.

An ongoing project is to clean up my source citations in Family Tree Maker. I had found another naturalization record, for Simche's son-in-law, Wolff (or William) Siegel, at FamilySearch.org in the New Jersey, Cape May County, New Jersey, County Naturalization Records, 1749-1986 and wanted to make sure my source citations were consistent for these three. I then realized that I had received Simche Siegel's records from a Seigle/Segal cousin, and had used a different (not very complete) citation. In order to make these citations consistent, I explored FamilySearch's Cape May County Naturalizations again, looking for Simche.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Tuesday's Tip ~ Losing American Citizenship by Marriage

I have been doing some research for a sister-in-law and came across an interesting item that doesn't occur in my husband's ancestry (or mine).

The following image is from the 1920 U.S. Census. The household is for my sister-in-law's great-grandmother, Sadie (Brubaker) (Glazer) Anderson and her second husband. They were living in Camden, New Jersey.

Sadie (also known as Sarah) first married in 1898, to George F. Glazer, who also was born in Pennsylvania. They had several (maybe eight) children together before they divorced. As this census record shows, by 1920, Sarah/Sadie (Brubaker) Glazer had married Agustus Anderson. The household also includes two of her children from her first marriage, Cora Glazer (age 20) and Alice Glazer (age 7), as well as Elinor Anderson, a daughter of Agustus, but I'm not sure who her mother is (Sadie or a first wife of Agustus).

Year: 1920; Census Place: Camden, New Jersey; Roll: T625_1022;Page: 9A;
Enumeration District: 8; Image: 127. Record for Agustus and Sadie Anderson.
The census tells me the following:
Anderson, Agustus, Head of Household, Owns his home, with mortgage, is 38 years old, born in Denmark, about 1882. He immigrated in 1910, and "Pa" means he has his papers; he is NOT a U.S. citizen, but has filed his intention to become a citizen.

Anderson, Sadie, Wife, is 36 years old, born in Pennsylvania, about 1884. Note the columns that indicate immigration year and citizenship. Agustus has "1910" and "Pa" and below that, Sadie has "x" and "Al."

Obviously since Sadie was born in Pennsylvania, she doesn't have a year of immigration, but by marrying an alien (non-citizen), Sadie lost her citizenship and wouldn't regain it until (or if) her husband, Augustus, became a citizen. This was the law at the time, and the logic behind the law was that if women couldn't vote, then their citizenship status wasn't that important. 

However, in August 1920, when women won the right to vote, it was deemed patently unfair that a woman could lose her citizenship and that right to vote by marrying a non-citizen. It took a couple of years, but in September 1922, immigration law changed, giving a woman the right to retain her citizenship (and that important right to vote) even if she married a non-citizen.

For those women who married an immigrant who did not become a citizen (or died before becoming a citizen), they had to complete paperwork to prove they were born in the U.S. and wanted to regain their citizenship rights. Alternatively, as in the case of Sadie, her second husband did become a naturalized citizen (according to the 1930 U.S. census), so she became a citizen again.

Thursday, February 5, 2015

More information on Bubbie Lena Handler

At about 44 minutes into the "Mishpacha Tape Helen and Esther" at YouTube, these cousins of my father-in-law tell the story about their Uncle Joe Handler and his wife Lena (Hollander) Handler (my father-in-law's parents). The statements from the cousins are in italics below, and my comments follow.

Joe was four years younger than his brother Sam. That's relatively accurate. I show Joe's birth date as 24 August 1884, and Sam's birth date as 27 December 1887, based on their draft cards, naturalization records, and in Joe's case, his marriage record from Hungary.
Arthur and Lena

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Cousin and Athlete Art Handler

More from "The Mishpacha Tape Helen and Esther 1988," which can be found on YouTube.

Esther and Helen
At about 38 minutes into this video, Helen talks about Art Handler, son of Sam Handler and Sadie (Herskovitz) Handler. This Art Handler is a first cousin to my father-in-law, as well as first cousin to Helen and Esther.

In the video, Helen states that "Art aspired to be a basketball player and was very, very good. He played...semi-professionally...and they wanted to send him to school on a scholarship and he would have gotten a scholarship to college for basketball...but Aunt Sadie and Uncle Sam didn't want him to do that. For some reason or other he let them talk him out of that...They didn't want him to do basketball...They wanted him to take over Uncle Sam's business."

I have another Handler cousin who found my blog a couple of years ago and after my last post mentioning this video, he sent me an email noting that there are quite a few details that are not correct (which I already knew). Specifically, he provided clarification on the above story about Art Handler, who was his Uncle Art:
The story about Art Handler is not accurate. He was a baseball player and was a bat boy for the Cleveland Indians. When Sam and Sadie found out, they stopped him. That is the semi-professional playing they talk about, (The Arthur that is Sam and Sadie Handler’s son) while he was still in high school. The story I heard, is that after school, they locked him in the basement so he wouldn’t go to that job. And, he could not get any scholarship because he disappeared from that world. When I later asked Art about that, he didn’t want to talk about it. In any case, he never got to play professionally, which he wanted to do. He was a good athlete and he played pick-up basketball (that is why they thought he was involved with basketball). He played on a senior team until he was an old man and couldn’t play anymore. He ended up doing what he did at the pop factory, delivering to grocery stores - but when the pop factory closed, he got a job delivering potato chips and related snacks and did that for his career. [Thank you to Alan Simon for this story.]